Contact and panini grills – what are the benefits?

Contact and panini grills – what are the benefits?

Lincat Griddle PanContact and panini grills tend to be portable and operate from a standard 13A supply. This means that they can be used anywhere, in a mobile catering wagon or outside catering kitchen for example, as well as in a standard kitchen.

As such they offer an excellent way of adding a range of hot snacks to your menu for a minimum outlay. And because they cook from both the top and the bottom, they can produce food very quickly, without the need for turning.

What should caterers consider before buying new equipment?

Cast iron plates heat up rapidly and smooth plates are ideal therefore for sealing in meat juices and flavour. Ribbed plates produce attractive branding marks, and are ideal for paninis. So consider carefully which is more important for your operation.

That said a model with a smooth bottom plate and a ribbed top might provide the perfect compromise. Alternatively, a twin headed model, with smooth plates on one side and ribbed plates on the other, could provide the best of both worlds.

Also think carefully about capacity and check that the outputs quoted by manufacturers are like for like. For example, are the figures quoted for output of burgers or steaks from chilled or frozen?

Look for models which meet all current EU safety regulations and are easy to clean. An independent dealer will be able to offer impartial advice. Check warranty details carefully.

What one tip would you offer someone who is investing in a new contact grill or panini machine?

Consider whether you need to invest in a separate model for vegetarian or halal food.

Lincat new product news:

We have added two new electric clam griddles to our heavy duty Opus 700 range.

Ideally suited to cooking meat products, the new single and double clam griddles cook food up to three times more quickly than standard griddles by cooking both sides of the food simultaneously. The clam plates automatically adjust to the thickness of the meat to provide even heat distribution, reduce shrinkage and seal in flavour.

Precise thermostatic control and individual digital timers on each clam plate help to produce perfect results, no matter how busy the kitchen. Independently controlled cooking zones provide greater flexibility and economy during quieter periods. The 12mm hard anodised aluminium clam tops are coated with PTFE non-stick sheets for easy cleaning.

“Busy kitchens need to produce first class grilled food quickly. Our new clam griddles meet exactly that requirement, and are perfect for steaks, burgers and chicken breasts”, said Nick McDonald, Marketing Director of Lincat Ltd. “By cooking both sides at the same time, juices and flavour are locked in and shrinkage is reduced.”

Website address:

Tel: 01522 875500

Read More

Christmas donation to Hospitality Action

For the second year running we decided to mark Christmas by making a donation of £2,000 to the hospitality and catering industry’s benevolent fund – Hospitality Action. This registered charity raises funds to help hospitality people who have fallen on hard times. We have just received a thank you letter from them and it is pleasing to know the money will be put to good use in the coming months. 

Click here to learn more about the type of work undertaken by Hospitality Action. If you would like to join us in supporting this worthwhile cause, please click here to go to the Hospitality Action website donation page.

Read More

Work Experience Jack Dickenson-Fogg

This week I have had my work experience at Lincat, and have thoroughly enjoyed it. To begin with I was quite nervous, but as soon as I arrived I was made very welcome. I have been in various departments throughout the week, which gave me a good insight into the many different roles within the company.

On my first day I had an introduction with Nick McDonald, the Marketing Director. In this Introduction I was informed of the many products made at the factory in Lincoln, and some of the basic background information of Lincat. This then set me up to begin working in the marketing department. During this time in the marketing department I had various different projects to complete, my first project was to evaluate the Lincat website and compare it to the other catering appliance manufacturer’s websites. Then I had my health and safety talk, with Paul Bilboa, this included a tour around the factory and a quick quiz on back injury. After completing a short course in health and safety I was awarded a certificate in manual handling.                                                            


Read More

Healthy chips in cost sector kitchens

I was recently asked by a journalist whether the widespread desire to offer ‘healthy food’ by cost sector kitchens has rung the death knell for everyone’s favourite – the ultimate comfort food – the chip!

My thoughts on the subject are that whereas a few years ago commercial fryers were starting to be left out of new cost sector kitchens and refits, they’re now beginning to make a comeback.

I think that’s because there’s a greater understanding that what counts, when it comes to healthy eating, is a balanced diet. And fried foods can form part of that healthy eating programme.

It’s true too, especially in healthcare settings, that ‘a bit of what you fancy does you good’. Good nutrition is essential to recovery and, if you can tempt patients to eat with well cooked, familiar food then there are real benefits to be had at every level.


Read More

2010 – A great year for Lincat!

The start of the New Year is always a good time to take a moment to reflect on the year gone by and to look ahead to the new.

It’s good to be able to report that although there has been a great deal of uncertainty in the market in recent times, we have recorded an increase in sales in 2010. To keep up with demand, we have recruited further manufacturing staff; a particularly pleasing achievement in these otherwise uncertain times.

It’s satisfying too that the increase in sales was fairly uniform across most product ranges, with Lynx 400, Silverlink 600, Opus 700 and Opus Combi Steamers all delivering solid increases. The same was true of water boilers, with FilterFlow now firmly established as the standard by which boilers are judged.


Read More